video thumbnail

SF@COL: CarGo's two-run single puts the Rockies ahead

One of the biggest storylines surrounding Colorado's early-season success was its dominance on the road, as the Rockies sprinted out a 10-3 record away from Coors Field. Since then, however, the Rockies have struggled, dropping five of their last six road games.

On Wednesday, following an eight-game homestand, Colorado once again hits the road, this time to Philadelphia, where the Rockies will begin a two-game set with the Phillies at 7:05 p.m. ET at Citizens Bank Park.

It's not as if the Rockies are only struggling on the road; they're simply struggling. Despite Tuesday's 5-3 win over San Francisco, the Rockies have lost 11 of their past 17 games. But, following Tuesday's win, the Rockies might be finding an offensive rhythm, as they have averaged 4.7 runs in their last five games. Of course, now they have to face one of Philadelphia's four aces, Cole Hamels (4-2, 3.19 ERA), on Wednesday.

"We are looking to gain our traction offensively," Rockies manager Jim Tracy said. "All that we're looking for to gain from that is, get beyond the result, and focus on the quality of the at-bat. Bottom line."

Before Monday's game -- in which the Rockies scored seven runs off two-time National League Cy Young Award winner Tim Lincecum -- the Rockies had a team meeting during which Tracy called for players to worry less about results and more about the processes that have been preached since Spring Training.

"As soon as [the ball] comes off the barrel of the bat, you've lost control of the situation," Tracy said. "You know what you have control over? Running 90 feet. ... That's what you have control over."

Hamels has been solid this season, tossing six consecutive quality starts before seeing that streak snapped in his last outing against the Braves. In that start, Hamels allowed four runs on eight hits in six innings, striking out seven. The 27-year-old left-hander has faced Colorado only once in his career, giving up seven runs on 11 hits in 3 2/3 innings on April 10, 2009, at Coors Field.

Opposing Hamels is fellow lefty Jorge De La Rosa (5-1, 3.70), who is coming off a win in his last start against San Diego. De La Rosa allowed five runs on nine hits in 5 2/3 innings in that outing, breaking a string of four consecutive quality starts, but earning his fifth victory of the season. The 30-year-old left-hander has struggled in his career against Philadelphia, going 0-3 with a 9.78 ERA. The last time De La Rosa pitched at Citizens Bank Park, on Aug. 5, 2009, he gave up seven runs on 10 hits in five innings.

Rockies: CarGo hitting stride
Outfielder Carlos Gonzalez hasn't hit for average so far this season, but at least now he certainly is hitting for power. Through 15 games in May, Gonzalez has hit four home runs with 11 RBIs, while walking 11 times. He also has six extra-base hits this month after having only five in 24 games in April. Although the 25-year-old is hitting only .245 this season, he is a .385 career hitter against Philadelphia.

Like Gonzalez, Colorado's other young stud is in a nice stretch. Shortstop Troy Tulowitzki has driven in multiple runs in three of his last five games.

Phillies: Struggling in the clutch
• The Phillies -- losers of four straight entering Wednesday -- have struggled with runners in scoring position. In their last 42 at-bats in such situations, Philadelphia is hitting only .167 (seven hits, entering Wednesday).

• Wednesday's game will mark a homecoming for the Phillies, who completed an eight-game, nine-day road trip on Tuesday.

Worth noting
• The Phillies' 2-1 loss to the Cardinals on Tuesday marked only the second time this season they lost a game started by a left-handed pitcher (Jaime Garcia). Their other loss against a southpaw came April 19 against Milwaukee's Randy Wolf.

• Two of Philadelphia outfielder Raul Ibanez's three career hits against De La Rosa have been home runs.

MLB.com Comments